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Research Summary

I am a Principal Scientist, iPSC Team Lead, and Engineered Allogeneic Therapies Team Co-Lead, at Umoja Biopharma, at their Boulder, CO location, helping propel Umoja’s proven cancer-targeting immunotherapies using iPSC and gene-editing technologies.

Previously, I was the Founding Director of the CU Boulder Stem Cell Research and Technology Resource Center, which is a campus-wide shared facility with the mission of promoting interdisciplinary research utilizing human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).

During my PhD at UC Santa Barbara in the laboratory of Dennis O. Clegg, I specialized in stem cell biology (primarily utilizing human iPSCs and hESCs) with a focus on the effects of the extracellular matrix (ECM) on the adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation of stem cells. These efforts were aimed at ultimately treating patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by developing an efficient method to generate retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) from iPSCs and hESCs and creating an implantable scaffold system for patient transplantation of RPE cells. Treatment strategies have since gone into clinical trials. In my first postdoctoral position at the CU Denver Anschutz Medical Campus in the joint lab of Luisa Mestroni and Matthew R.G. Taylor, I gained valuable experience and knowledge in the areas of generating patient-specific disease models through differentiation of patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) into cardiomyocytes, as well as designing and undertaking high-throughput drug screening assays using these patient-derived cells. I went on to become a postdoctoral researcher at CU Boulder in the lab of Nobel Laureate Prof. Thomas Cech, where I researched the epigenetic mechanisms by which cancer cells become immortal through reactivation of telomerase.


Google Scholar listing of publications

33. Rowland, T,J., O’Hara, S.D., Vereide, D., Koning, R., Yingst, A., Jarrell, D., Arnold, C.A., Hernandez, S., Mittelsteadt, K., Nicolai, C., Leung, W., Beitz, L., Ryu, B. Crisman, R., Scharenberg, A., Garbe, C., Larson, R.P. (in preparation) Using a synthetic cytokine receptor platform with human iPSCs to produce cytotoxic innate lymphocytes as off-the-shelf cancer therapeutics.

32. Yang, Q., Warren, C.J., Barbachano-Guerrero, A., Fairchild, L.M., Rowland, T.J., Allen, M.A., Dowell, R.D., Sawyer, S.L. (in preparation) Macrophages derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) serve as a high-fidelity humanized cellular model for investigating HIV-1, dengue, influenza, and other viruses.

31. Quansah, M., Fetter, M., Fineran, A., Colling, H., Rowland, T.J., Bonham, A.J. (submitted) Rapid and quantitative detection of lung cancer biomarker ENOX2 using an aptamer in an electrochemical DNA-based (E-DNA) biosensor.

30. Pooch, D.J., Rowland, T.J., Bonham, A.J. (submitted) Pyllelic: Software for the individual read-level analysis of bisulfite-sequencing data

29. Barnes, A.M., Holmstoen, T.B., Bonham, A.J., Rowland, T.J. (2022) Differentiating human pluripotent stem cells to cardiomyocytes using purified extracellular matrix proteins. Bioengineering. 9(720):1-17.

28. Nguyen, A.B.N., Maldonado, M., Poch, D., Sodia, T., Smith, A., Rowland, T.J., Bonham, A.J. (2021) Electrochemical DNA biosensor that detects early celiac disease autoantibodies. Sensors. 21(2671):1-8.

27. Rowland, T,J., Bonham, A.J., Cech, T.R. (2020) Allele-specific proximal promoter hypomethylation of the telomerase reverse transcriptase gene (TERT) associates with TERT expression in multiple cancers. Mol. Oncol. 14(10):2358-2374.

26. Del Favero, G., Bonifacio, A., Rowland, T.J., Gao, S., Song, K., Sergo, V., Adler, E.D., Mestroni, L., Sbaizero, O., Taylor, M.R.G. (2020) Danon disease-associated LAMP-2 deficiency drives metabolic signature indicative of mitochondrial aging and fibrosis in cardiac tissue and hiPSC-derived cardiomyocytes. J. Clin. Med. 9(8):2457.

25. Rowland, T.J., Dumbovic, G., Hass, E.P., Rinn, J.L., Cech, T.R. (2019) Single-Cell Imaging Reveals Unexpected Heterogeneity of Telomerase Reverse Transcriptase Expression Across Cancer Cell Lines. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., 116(337):18488-18497.

24. Gigli, M., Merlo, M., Graw, S., Barbati, G., Rowland, T.J., Slavov, D., Stolfo, D., Sweet, M., Dal Ferro, M., Altinier, A., Ramani, F., Brun, F., Cocciolo, A., Puggia, I., Morea, G., McKenna, W., La Rosa, F.G., Taylor, M.R.G., Sinagra, G., Mestroni, L. (2019) Genetic Risks for Arrhythmia Phenotypes in Dilated Cardiomyopathy. J. Amer. Coll. Card., 74(11):1480-1490.

23. Peña, B., Maldonado, M., Bonham, A.J., Aguado, B.A., Dominguez-Alfaro, A., Laughter, M., Rowland, T.J., Bardill, J., Farnsworth, N.L., Ramon, N.A., Taylor, M.R.G., Anseth, K.S., Prato, M., Shandas, R., McKinsey, T., Park, D., Mestroni, L.,  (2019) Gold Nanoparticle-Functionalized Reverse Thermal Gel for Tissue Engineering Applications. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces, 11(20):18671-18680.

22. Puggia, I., Rowland, T.J., Miyamoto, S.D., Sinagra, G., Mestroni, L. (2018) Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms in Heart Failure, in Heart Failure in the Child and Young Adult: From Bench to Bedside, Elsevier.

21. Peña, B., Laughter, M., Jett, S., Rowland, T.J., Taylor, M.R.G., Mestroni, L., Park, D. (2018) Injectable Hydrogels for Cardiac Tissue Engineering. Macromolecular Bioscience, 18(1800079):1-22.

20. Begay, R.L., Graw, S.L., Sinagra, G., Asimaki, A., Rowland, T.J., Slavov, D. B., Gowan, K., Jones, K. L., Brun, F., Merlo, M., Miani, D., Sweet, M., Devaraj, K., Wartchow, E. P., Gigli, M., Puggia, I., Salcedo, E. E., Garrity, D. M., Ambardekar, A. V., Buttrick, P., Reece, T. B., Bristow, M. R., Saffitz, J. E., Mestroni, L., Taylor, M.R.G. (2018) Filamin C Truncation Mutations Are Associated With Arrhythmogenic Dilated Cardiomyopathy and Changes in the Cell-Cell Adhesion Structures. JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology, 4(4):504-514.

19. Rowland, T.J., Friedlander, M., Hinton, D.R., Gamm, D.M., Clegg, D.O. (2017) Stem Cells and Cellular Therapy, in Ryan’s Retina, 6th edition, Elsevier.

18. Hashem, S.I., Murphy, A.N., Divakaruni, A.S., Klos, M.L., Nelson, B.C., Gault, E.C., Rowland, T.J., Perry, C.N., Gu, Y., Dalton, N.D., Bradford, W.H., Devaney, E.J., Peterson, K.L., Jones, J.L., Taylor, M.R.G., Chen, J., Chi, N.C., Adler, E.D. (2017) Impaired Mitophagy Facilitates Mitochondrial Damage in Danon Disease. Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology, 108:86-94.

17. Peña, B., Bosi, S., Aguado, B., Borin, D., Farnsworth, N., Dobrinskikh, E., Rowland, T.J., Martinelli, V., Jeong, M., Taylor, M.R.G., Long, C.S., Shandas, R., Sbaizero, O., Prato, M., Anseth, K.S., Park, D., Mestroni, L. (2017) Injectable Carbon Nanotube-Functionalized Reverse Thermal Gel Promotes Cardiomyocyte Survival and Maturation. ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 9(37):31645-31656.

16. Daniel, J., Fetter, L., Jett, S., Rowland, T.J., Bonham, A.J. (2017) Electrochemical Aptamer Scaffold Biosensors for Detection of Botulism and Ricin Proteins, in Methods in Molecular Biology, Second Edition, O. Holst, Ed., Springer.

15. Rowland, T.J., Graw, S.L., Sweet, M.E., Gigli, M., Taylor, M.R.G., Mestroni, L. (2016) Obscurin Variants in Patients with Left Ventricular Noncompaction. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 68(20): 2237-38.

14. Rowland, T.J., Mestroni, L., Taylor, M.R.G. (2016) Danon Disease: Dysregulation of Autophagy in a Multisystem Cardiomyopathy. Journal of Cell Science, 129(11): 2135-43.

13. Puggia, I., Merlo, M., Barbati, G., Rowland, T.J., Stolfo, D., Gigli, M., Ramani, F., Di Lenarda, A., Sinagra, G. (2016) Natural History of Dilated Cardiomyopathy in Children. Journal of the American Heart Association, 5 (7): 1-10.

12. Begay, R.L., Tharp, C.A., Martin, A., Graw, S.L., Sinagra, G., Miani, D., Slavov, D.B., Rowland, T.J., Stafford, N., Sweet, M.E., Brun, F., Jones, K.L., Gowan, K., Mestroni, L., Garrity, D.M., Taylor, M.R.G. (2016) FLNC Gene Splice Mutations Cause Dilated Cardiomyopathy. Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Basic to Translational Science, 1 (5): 344-359.

11. Fetter, L., Richards, J., Daniel, J., Roon, L., Rowland, T.J., Bonham, A.J. (2015) Electrochemical Aptamer Scaffold Biosensors for Detection of Botulism and Ricin Toxins. Chemical Communications, 51: 15137-15140.

10. Hossein, N., Zhang, L., Zhu, D., Chader, G., Falabella, P., Stefanini, F., Rowland, T.J., Clegg, D.O., Kashani, A., Hinton, D., Humayun, M. (2015) Stem Cell Based Therapies for Age-Related Macular Degeneration: The Promises and the Challenges. Progress in Retinal and Eye Research, 48: 1-39.

9.  Clegg, D.O., Hikita, S.T., Buchholz, D.E., Rowland, T.J., Conti, L., Pennington, B., Croze, R., Leach, L., Tsie, M., and Johnson, L.V. (2013) Derivation of retinal pigmented epithelial cells from pluripotent stem cells, in Stem Cells Handbook, Second Edition, S. Sell, Ed., Springer.

8.  Rowland, T.J., Blaschke, A.J., Buchholz, D.E., Hikita, S.T., Johnson, L.V., Clegg, D.O. (2013) Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells to Retinal Pigmented Epithelium in Defined Conditions Using Purified Extracellular Matrix Proteins. Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, 7 (8): 642-653.

7.  Rowland, T.J., Buchholz, D.E., Clegg, D.O. (2012) Pluripotent Human Stem Cells for the Treatment of Retinal Disease. Journal of Cellular Physiology, 227 (2): 457-466.

6.  Rowland, T.J. (2011) Human Pluripotent Stem Cells and the Role of the Extracellular Matrix in Undifferentiated Growth and Differentiation to Retinal Pigmented Epithelium. Dissertation.

5.  Rowland, T.J., Miller, L.M., Blaschke, A.J., Doss, E.L., Bonham, A.J., Hikita, S.T., Johnson, L.V., Clegg, D.O. (2010) Roles of Integrins in Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Growth on Matrigel and Vitronectin. Stem Cells and Development, 19 (8): 1231-1240.

4.  Clegg, D.O., Rowland, T.J. (2010) Dan E. Koshland, Jr. Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, 154 (4): 478-483.

3.  Buchholz, D.E., Hikita, S.T., Rowland, T.J.,Friedrich, A.M., Hinman, C.R., Johnson, L.V., Clegg, D.O. (2009) Derivation of Functional Retinal Pigmented Epithelium from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells. Stem Cells, 27 (10): 2427-2434.

2.  Clegg, D.O., Buchholz, D., Hikita, S.H., Rowland, T.J., Hu, Q., Johnson, L.V. (2008) Retinal Pigment Epithelial Cells: Development in vivo and Derivation from Human Embryonic Stem Cells in vitro for Treatment of Age-Related Macular Degeneration, in Stem Cell Research and Therapeutics, Springer.

1.  Hamilton, E.P., Dear, P.H., Rowland, T.J., Saks, K., Eisen, J.A., Orias, E. (2006) Use of HAPPY Mapping for the Higher Order Assembly of the Tetrahymena Genome. Genomics, 88: 443-451.

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